Baseball Coaching Staff
, Head Coach
Lower Columbia College has hired a new head baseball coach. Donegal Fergus has taken over the program from legendary head coach Kelly Smith, who retired in June of 2012.
Fergus is currently in his second season as an assistant coach with the Division I Seattle University baseball team. He serves as the team's offensive coordinator and third base coach, as well as working with the outfielders. He also acts as the Redhawks' Director of Camps.
"It was an incredible talent pool of applicants", said LCC Athletic Director Kirc Roland.
"Coach Fergus has the perfect blend of knowledge, experience and understanding of the expectations here at LCC and he put himself right at the top."
Fergus will also serve the entire LCC student population as Retention Specialist.
"Coach Fergus has a wealth of experience working with students as an education planner and that really separated him from the other outstanding candidates", according to Roland.
Fergus came to Seattle University from Tacoma Community College, where he was the head baseball coach for five seasons. He compiled an overall record of 125-100 (.556), reaching the NWAACC playoffs in each of his five seasons, including a third-place finish at the 2006 NWAACC Tournament. He saw 42 of his players at Tacoma CC advance to four-year schools, including seven who went on to NCAA Division I institutions.
Before becoming the head coach in Tacoma, Fergus was an assistant coach at Lower Columbia for five seasons, helping them to four division titles, three NWAACC runner-up finishes, and one NWAACC championship. As the recruiting coordinator at LCC, he helped orchestrate some of the best recruiting classes of any school in the northwest, including the 2005 group, which saw 7 players drafted by major league organizations.
He played baseball at Linfield College for legendary coach Scott Carnahan, a former LCC head coach himself. Fergus earned his bachelor's degree in political science from Linfield in 2000 and his master's degree in homeland security from American Military University in 2007. He is a native of Powers, Oregon.
, Assistant Coach
Coach Tweit begins his 6th year as a coach at LCC. He is a Red Devil through and through. Grady came here in 1997 as a 3rd baseman from Sehome H.S. in Bellingham, WA where he started for 4 years for coach Gary Hatch.
Grady was early in a long line of Bellingham players to wear the Devil's uniform. All of the boys from Bellingham that came to LCC played summers for Grady's father, Murray, on the Post #7 American Legion team.
As a player Grady is remembered as a tough competitor who wasn't afraid to get his uniform dirty. He led the Devils to a (40-5) record in '99, including a 28 game winning streak. He played the whole season, every game, on a knee that would require surgery at seasons end. In 2000 he helped LCC to a 2nd place finish in the NWAACC tournament. Grady went on to complete his playing career at York College in Nebraska.
Grady has been an assistant coach for two years at Sehome H.S. under Hatch, another summer under his dad, Murray, with Post #7, and a year with the Belligham Bells of the PIL, under current OSU assistant David Wong.
In 2004 Grady was the head coach of the North Whatcom Senior Legion team and for two summers was the head coach of the Post #7 Legion team out of Bellingham. Grady is currently in his second season as the head coach for the Pacific Tech Senior Legion team based out of Kelso.
Grady, his wife Alicia, daughter Mackynlee and son Gunnar currently live in Longview as Grady completes his B.A. in Social Work through Eastern Washington University.
, Pitching Coach
DJ Lidyard joins the Red Devil staff after spending two years at Tacoma Community College, where he served as the Pitching Coaching and Recruiting Coordinator. Lidyard made the playoffs both years and helped lead TCC to a 30 win season for just the second time in the history of the program.
Lidyard joins the coaching fraternity following an outstanding playing career. Coach Lidyard will serve as the pitching coach and assist in recruiting, as well as the Strength and Conditioning program.
Lidyard attended Lower Columbia College where he helped lead LCC to the NWAACC Championship in 2005. His ERA was an outstanding 0.92 while going 9-2 with 71 strikeouts in 59 innings and giving up 20 walks. After a very successful freshman year, Lidyard was voted Western Region 1st Team pitcher and was drafted in the 19th round by the Baltimore Orioles.
In 2006 while attending LCC, Lidyard was named Western Division 1st Team pitcher and All NWAACC. He led LCC to a 43-5 record and within one out of winning a second NWAACC championship. Lidyard struck out 103 batters in 70 innings while only walking 22 batters with a fastball that reached 95 MPH. He signed a letter of intent with the defending national champions Oregon State Beavers and was drafted by the Milwaukee Brewers.
In the summer of 2006 Lidyard pitched for the Wenatchee Applesox in the WCCBL and set the league strikeout record with 86 strikeouts. He was named the starting pitcher for the league's inaugural All Star game and went on to be named Co-MVP. By the end of the summer, Lidyard decided to turn down a scholarship at OSU to pursue his professional career and signed a contract with the Milwaukee Brewers.
After playing 2 seasons in the Minor Leagues, his Professional career was cut short with a shoulder injury. He played professionally for the West Virginia Power in the South Atlantic League, where the Power lost in the finals for SAL Championship.
Lidyard graduated in 2004 from Cascade Christian High School in Puyallup, WA where he played football and baseball.
Coach Lidyard brings a wealth of knowledge from his playing career and looks forward to helping lead the Red Devils back to the NWAACC Tournament.
, Assistant Coach
Krohn joins the Red Devil staff after spending the last three years as head coach at his alma mater Gresham High School, in Gresham, OR. While at the helm of the school’s program, he guided them to the playoffs the last two seasons.
Krohn is himself a former Red Devil, having been a 2-year starter in 2002-2003, earning 1st Team Western Division, 2nd Team All NWAACC, and All NWAACC Tournament honors.
After leaving Lower Columbia, Krohn transferred to nationally-ranked Coastal Carolina University, where he helped lead the Chanticleers to a 40-23 record, en-route to a Big South title and a bid to the Columbia, SC Regional.
Seeking to be closer to home, he transferred after the 2004 season to the University of Portland. That season, he started 52 of 53 games, leading the team in hits, stolen bases, triples, and total bases, and earned Team MVP honors.
After graduation from UP, Krohn enjoyed a brief career in professional baseball, playing in 2006 for the Kalamazoo Kings of the Frontier League.
During his illustrious high school career, Krohn garnered a slew of awards, including Mt Hood Conference Player of the Year as a senior, 1st Team All State, and USA Today Honorable Mention All American.
Krohn’s coaching career began in 2006 as an assistant coach at the University of Portland, where he worked with the infielders and hitters, as well as coaching first base during games.
Krohn earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from University of Portland. He is currently working towards his master’s degree. He is single, and resides in La Center, WA.
, Assistant Coach
Jason Castro was added to the Red Devil coaching staff on June 1, 2012. Like Head Coach Donegal Fergus, he played collegiately at Linfield College under former Red Devil skipper, Scott Carnahan. Prior to that he graduated from Snohomish High School where he earned all-state recognition while playing for Coach Kim Hammons.
Prior to joining that LCC staff, Castro had been the Head Baseball Coach at R.A. Long High School since 2006.
Prior to his stint with the Lumberjacks he coached at Rainier High School in Oregon. His teams had a reputation for competing and playing hard. Castro’s combined record as a high school baseball coach is 96-56-1. His Lumberjack teams averaged fourteen wins a season and qualified for the district playoffs every single year.
The highlight of his RA Long tenure was taking the Lumberjacks to the state championship game and being named the 2010 Washington State Associated Press State Coach of the Year.
Castro earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from Linfield College and holds a Masters degree from American Public University. He currently teaches history at R.A. Long High School. He and his wife Jill and their two daughters, Bailey and Madison, reside in Longview.